Mouth That Roars

Bill Liblick has made a name for himself of National TV Talk Shows where he spouted his outspoken views from the front row. Now he offers you his opinion every week in the "MOUTH THAT ROARS" Column in the Sullivan County Post.

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August 21st, 2014

CRMC Improving Our Healthcare

I am pleased to report that Catskill Regional Medical Center (CRMC) is repeatedly emerging as one of our major success stories. Gone are the days of bad health care and poor management.

Under the leadership of CEO Dr. Gerard Galarneau along with the hospital’s affiliation with Crystal Run, Orange Regional Medical Center (ORMC), and the Greater Hudson Valley Health System, CRMC has proven that things can get better.

The list of medical professionals now affiliated with the CRMC is extremely impressive, as are the areas of the hospital’s growth. The Emergency Department’s expansion program was unimaginable several short years ago.

Galarneau told me, “These accomplishments achieved at Catskill Regional Medical Center are due to the dedication and hard-work of the entire staff. I am extremely proud of each and every employee. Our promise is that we will continue to strive to make CRMC a hospital that not only improves our community’s health but also instills pride.”

Speaking at the Sullivan County Health Summit several weeks ago, Galarneau outlined all the improvements at CRMC. I asked him to elaborate for all of us.

Here is his response:

CRMC Accomplishments and Advancements:

1. In 2013, Catskill Regional Medical Center received “Vital Access Provider” (VAP) funding. The VAP program was established by the New York State Dept. of Health Medicaid Redesign Team to provide funds to vital access/safety net health care providers around New York State to help improve community care and to achieve defined financial, operational, and quality improvement goals related to the integration or reconfiguration of health care services. These monies allow CRMC (the sole community hospital in Sullivan County) to augment access and quality of healthcare to the community. With this support, we were able to expand primary care and add Primary Care physicians in our Livingston Manor, Callicoon and Harris offices. Walk-in and same-day appointments are available. Daytime and evening appointments are offered at each location. This increased access has saved lives of patients in Sullivan County with early diagnosis and treatment of life-threating disorders.

2. Employee engagement increased significantly over the last two years.

3. Quality has improved with our Core measures (such as treatment of Heart Attack, Heart Failure and Pneumonia) at 97% and CRMC’s patient safety score exceeds “best practice” for 2013 and 2014.

4. CRMC’s new electronic medical record system has markedly increasing patient safety related to medications. The EPIC system allows providers to ensure accurate medication delivery and helps prevent adverse drug interactions.

5. CRMC’s Joint Commission 2013 survey results were the best in the organization’s history.

6. Our average emergency room to provider time (the time it takes to see an ED doctor) was under 15 minutes all of 2013 and 2014.

7. CRMC received 5 stars from Healthgrades (these results are based on patient outcomes) for the treatment of Stroke, Respiratory failure and Appendectomy. The organization has also received awards for best ED by the River Reporter Newspaper. CRMC also received awards for Blood Bank, lab, radiology.

8. Renovation of the CRMC Behavior Health Unit was completed in 2013. The unit is not only beautiful, but safe.

9. CRMC’s Wound Care services were expanded to include Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy. This has allowed us to improve the efficacy of the treatment of poorly healing wounds. Eighty five percent of all the wounds we have treated (which previously failed other treatments) have completely healed.

10. CRMC will receive New York State Stroke Center designation in the next few weeks. The importance of recognizing and treating a stroke as soon as possible will vastly improve patient outcomes. Preparing for Stroke Center designation for the last year has improved the care of stroke patients and allowed us to receive the 5 star-award from Healthgrades. Now that official Stroke Center designation will be achieved, EMS workers will take stroke patients to CRMC instead of far-away hospitals. In the case of a stroke, time is vital for the patient.

11. We have also improved our ability to diagnose and treat burns. We are working with Lehigh Valley Regional Burn Center using Telemedicine. This allows our Emergency Room staff to receive consultation from a burn surgeon which helps us triage and treat burn victims.
12. We are applying for special certification of our Oncology Department. Achieving accreditation will ensure the highest level of care consistent with best practice.

13. We have expanded Mammography and Bone Densitometry at our Callicoon campus, Grover M. Hermann Hospital.

14. CRMC has done a complete renovation of the Physical Rehabilitation Center at the Callicoon campus.

15. We have done a great deal of training our Nursing staff, and well as Nursing Assistants. Topics include; the treatment of Stroke, Pediatric patients, Sepsis and Diabetes.

16. We have begun training Touro Medical Students at CRMC. This has been not only a benefit to the students, but the medical and nursing staff. The presence of students has helped us impress the need of continuous learning for everyone in the organization.

17. CRMC is in the process of completely physically transforming the Medical Center. We are converting most of our rooms from triple-bedded rooms to single-occupancy rooms. We are on our way toward transforming the hospital into a healing environment that the community will take great pride in. In addition, we’re using new, state–of-the-art equipment that helps us provide even better care for our patients.

18. We will also transform and pave the entire parking lot at CRMC. The physicians have relinquished their parking lot to increase handicapped and patient parking closer to the medical center.

Thank you Dr. Gerard Galarneau for you dedication and commitment to improving Sullivan County’s Health.

It is comforting to know that Sullivan County can boast a new quality health care system. May none of us ever need any of their services, but it is good to know they are there.

Bill Liblick has made a name for himself of National TV Talk Shows where he spouted his outspoken views from the front row. Now he offers you his opinion every week in the “MOUTH THAT ROARS” Column in the Sullivan County Post Join in on the Conversation on Facebook in the group Sullivan County Post


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